Following their parents’ generosity and love for the Gordon JCC, Madeline Pargh’s children, Bernie, Andy and Linda, have graciously donated $1 million to name the Madeline Pargh Arts and Crafts Center, which will be built on our campus this fall and will also provide a home for Camp Davis in the summers.
Madeline grew up in an artistic home and was creative from a young age. She enjoyed activities such as flower arranging as an adult, but she didn’t begin her visual art career until her early 40’s, when she took a charcoal drawing class with her then teen-age daughter Linda at the former JCC. Linda didn’t develop an interest in drawing, but her mother did, and it flourished through multiple classes, especially those taught by Anton Weiss.
Madeline was a prolific artist, who explored multiple mediums and artistic styles as she continued to paint. She filled her home, as well as other family members’ homes, with her art, which they continue to cherish. She remained modest about her work, often forgetting to sign her pieces. As her daughter Linda remarked, “Art became a wonderful way for my mother to express herself. She was a true artist. We know our mother would approve the JCC continuing this tradition of exposing all people to art and providing a space with the necessary tools to hone their artistic skills.”
Building on the success of the GJCC’s painting classes, Art on the West Side and monthly art exhibits, the Madeline Pargh Arts and Craft Center will provide a venue for year-round quality art instruction on the West Side of Nashville. Beginning in the Fall of 2022, offerings will include classes in painting and drawing, pottery, photography, and jewelry-making. The Arts and Crafts Center will also provide opportunities for enhanced Art Specialty Camps in the summer of 2022.
The building itself will provide a space for building community connections and encouraging social interaction with ample casual space for events of all types for all ages. This multi-functional space will offer open-air as well as climate-controlled options, including a stage that will allow for indoor and outdoor performances.
Ground breaking is planned for December, and the center will be open for Camp Davis in 2022.